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|1 hour 31 min ago||Priorities||
I don't really think they're doing anything dogmatically so much as for the regents and AD, running Michigan into the ground is a casual hobby. They don't really think through these things because they just don't care. I don't know if they're making much money off it but obviously they're sitting on Michigan's legacy like it's a comfy chair as opposed to determined to live up to the reputation for excellence it's built up. I mean, the fans got Brandon fired (ahem, to resign) but that was only after he'd become a national embarrassment that kept Michigan in the news for all the wrong reasons. That's hardly a bold move.
It's like a bunch of bratty trust fund babies took over the family business. They're already where they want to be in their lives so Michigan is just a toy to them. As such even 100,000 raging fans is really just a minor embarrassment to them, and only worthy of scorn.
Schlissel seems to be sane but if no one in the university knows how to run an athletic department he probably doesn't have anyone he can safely confide in.
|1 day 1 hour ago||On the bright side||
At the same time I marvel at Chesson's eagerness to block. On the punt fake he made a vicious block downfield, and by "downfield" I mean like 20-30 yards downfield that gave Kerridge an extra 10-15 yards or so. That means he blocked his guy and raced downfield just to murderdeathkill somebody else.
|1 day 1 hour ago||Semantics||
I've been reading football for years and I still don't know what "power" means for the same reason.
The takeaway I'm getting here is that RichRod changed his offense to suit the talents of his players, which is something Michigan has had problems doing since they kicked him to the curb. I think Nuss is trying but DG is broken for some reason and Hoke screwed him by not addressing the QB depth situation.
|1 day 2 hours ago||Red herring||
I don't want a football factory. I root for Michigan partly because it's still a school. Whenever anyone suggests we become more like Alabama, I suggest they root for Alabama because they'll give you Alabama.
No, the problem isn't that we're losing; it's that the losses were mostly preventable. I don't know that we'd have beaten MSU in any shape or form last year, but consider the issues we had against the likes of ND or Rutgers. Can we honestly say it's because the players were studying too hard?
The lack of QB depth was preventable. The lack of O-line and RB development was preventable. The implosion of the secondary was preventable. They were all very much coaching decisions that we predicted would bite them in the butt, and it DID bite them. And it was mostly because they kept making the easy decisions when they're being paid to make hard decisions. It was easier to play an injured Gardner than address the QB issue. It was easier for Borges to scheme one-week gimmick offenses than develop the O-line. It was easier to pretend Manning could coach DBs in a new scheme than find another coach. It was easier to retain Fred Jackson in spite of the screaming evidence that he's been washed up for years. It was easier to just do what MSU is doing when we didn't have the personnel, coaches or experience. Hoke did eventually fire Borges but only when it was clear he had no choice.
They say they work hard. I believe that. I 100% believe that. I don't question their effort. But the most efficient way to waste effort is to avoid making tough decisions.
|1 day 3 hours ago||On the defense||
MGoBlog has been harping that this defense hasn't been able to stop up-tempo mobile QBs, but. . . they're kinda hard to stop, period. That's why they're all the rage in college football these days, and why MGoBlog is a spread zealot in the first place. MSU had success stopping all manner of offenses last season but even they had trouble with Ohio State and Ludicrous Speed Indiana; they won because their offense improved dramatically over the course of the season. And even they are getting exposed as OCs are realizing they were counting on them to not test the safeties (they also lost their best safety to the draft after last season). Modern offenses are hard to stop yo.
Mattison's been good. Record, late-game implosions and some head-scratching changes aside, if he kept coaching the defense I'd be OK with it. However, I'm going to go back to my "Hoke is a technician doing an engineer's job" post and declare that Mattison, Nuss and Hoke are all limited. We're doing IZ because it's a mature concept. We're doing 4-3 over with press man because that's what MSU did last year (and it's already being exposed). They're adopters, not innovators, which means they'll never be better than B+. This year Michigan was spectacularly unlucky in numerous ways, but in my mind I still can't envison them doing better than 9-3. And while fans would be happy with that, long-term that's not what Michigan fans accept as a hypothetical, optimistic ceiling.
The last job I quit was for a parts manufacturer that was losing market share because they stuck to mature concepts they knew inside and out. They could guarantee reliability, but for the premium they charged, they couldn't match competitors' performance. They weren't idiots; they just wanted the world to stand still for them. Sound familiar?
|1 day 15 hours ago||Agreed||
But about a fucking year too late. They'd been asleep on the job for years so pretty much the ONLY reason they're hitting hard now is because the writing is on the wall.
They still have a job to do, but this is not journalism. This is exactly the opposite of journalism. The fans made the news, the fans drove this, and the media was the goddamn caboose the whole way.
I don't mind hard-hitting questions but this was more like kicking someone after the beat-down.
|1 day 20 hours ago||On the band||
Since football sucks. . .
I was in MMB in the 90s and I am so jealous of the shows Ohio State's band get to do. They're creative, well-done, varied and really entertaining.
I actually submitted ideas to the MMB. They were "filed". Le sigh. . .
|1 day 22 hours ago||I like Nuss, so far at least||
I could be delusional but I think Nuss is OK. I honestly thing DG injured his shoulder during the ND game and Nuss spent the whole season trying to hide it. By the end of the season the O-line is blocking pretty well and they play well in spurts. Borges could win games here and there by scheming but Nuss is actually building something and made progress in year one.
He's had to deal with unmotivated players, an injured QB, no QB depth, a lazy playmaker and a disaster of an O-line. DG's ankle was injured so QB runs were out. His shoulder was injured (just look at the throws -- probably a torn labrum) so long throws were out and even his short throws are erratic. His receivers were green so short routes are ineffective and the only guy who can take over a game -- Funchess -- doesn't give a shit. Meanwhile the O-line and RBs spent the whole season learning IZ. I mean, what the hell do you do at that point? It would be tempting for him to go the Borges route and rely on gimmicks to win a few games but he sacrificed short-term success to leave the team in better shape.
If my opinion of him has changed at all, it's that I think Nuss' ceiling is similar to Mattison's in that he's probably a B+ coordinator at best. I'd like to see what he could do here with several years to work with, but he might take an unfair share of the blame for this season's failure.
|1 day 22 hours ago||Hugs & smooches||
I suggest you find a new blog to read. We will be fine without you.
|2 days 16 hours ago||Damn||
He certainly seems more likeable than DB at first glance, but I'm far from impressed.
|2 days 20 hours ago||Hmm, maybe not quite that||
He may be more like a technician who think he's an engineer. He knows the game of football inside and out like my grandpa knew engines. My grandfather could make entire machines from scrap metal. If the part he needed didn't exist, he'd measure it, spin up the lathe and make one. He was anything but an idiot; he was one of the smartest people I knew as a kid, and I looked up to him. I will defend his reputation with my 170-pound couch potato frame and little Nintendo-calloused fists of futility if you were a 300-pound MMA veteran; I respected the man enough to sacrifice a few broken bones to get the message across.
But he didn't invent. He was a builder, not an innovator. He could put together a working vehicle from spare parts and literally did so, but it was a manual transmission, ICE tractor. I eventually became an engineer, and realized my job wasn't to weld together spare parts like I'd imagined while watching him as a kid, but design something that had never existed before.
The problem is that the cutting edge isn't a different enviroment. It's the same environment; it's a different job. Consider how firemen and mechanics were terrified when hybrids first came out. They didn't even know what parts were safe to touch (we had to mark them bright orange); they were that lost. These are the same firemen we rely on to save our lives and mechanics we trusted all through the days of monolithic engines; it's not like they were or are idiots. But their entire world of expertise was not the cutting edge. The cutting edge is not what they do. If anything, it scares them.
Hoke was the perfect coach at Ball State because they needed a guy who could get them a working engine. But Michigan is not some broken-down tractor. High-profile programs are like effin' NASA by comparison, and your 50-year-old technology -- no matter how well you know it -- won't fly when the expectations are to land a nuclear-powered probe on Mars. My grandpa was a damn smart guy, but if he was alive and worked for NASA today it'd be to repair trucks.
|5 days 19 hours ago||Of course||
Are you mad? No way our offense won't exploit this matchup by throwing bubble screens to Darboh.
Wait, you want Funchess to go deep? You must be thinking of UnLikely.
|1 week 24 min ago||QA||
"I think it's just the same as ours; you've got to block it all out. They don't know what we've done behind the scenes."
No one will ever care, Jake. It's not always fair, but that's not how evaluations work. The person who's paid to care about the "how" is your boss or, in the case of sports, your coach. But everyone -- not just athletes, EVERYONE -- is judged by results. Not that this team owes anyone anything so you can hold your head high, but this is why Hoke is a dead man walking.
|1 week 5 hours ago||Might as well go EXTREME||
When our guys take plays off, they take plays off!
|1 week 22 hours ago||Doubt it||
I don't think DG has the sort of injuries that heal in two weeks.
All the attention's on his leg and that's certainly a problem; when you can't use designed QB runs it really limits your game. But I also think his shoulder's been injured since midway through the ND game. When your QB can't run OR throw, all you've got is the tailback runs. Except our O-line can't block it and our tailbacks can't run it.
Thing is, this is one area where I really think their policy on injuries isn't helping. Right now the book on DG is, he can't run or throw but he's still their best QB; attack the run game, jump the routes and hit him whenever you get a chance. If it's revealed his ankle and shoulder are injured then the book changes to. . . he can't run or throw but he's still their best QB; attack the run game, jump the routes and hit him whenever you get a chance. Some dirty players might target him but they're targeting him anyway.
What's the benefit to coming clean? Because it's a lot easier for fans to accept, and yes, we do matter in some way. I remember when everyone thought Denard had regressed when it turned out he had a major infection on his throwing hand that the coaches hid. The next season we knew he'd injured his elbow and he didn't catch nearly as much heat for his throwing issues.
|1 week 6 days ago||Seriously||
You do correct errors but you also need to point out positive. Not to coddle fragile little snowflakes, but because if they don't realize they did something right, they might try to do it differently the next time. There is such a thing as going away from what works, especially if what "works" is mitigative. For example, a QB is always looking to make a play. Sometimes they need to be taught to throw it OOB or take sacks. So when they do it, you don't always focus on how they could've made a play, if what they did was in fact the best decision.
Thing is, M00N was so rife with errors I'm not sure what positive you glean from it. Pass protection, I guess.
|1 week 6 days ago||Number One, I order you to take a #2||
"Number one, yesterday we had a good chance with the players to look at the Northwestern film [and] make the corrections we need to make, but really emphasize the good things because really that's what you want to see are the good things."
AfterM00N? Must've been the shortest film session on record.
|2 weeks 1 min ago||DB||
"No coincidence that as people started hating on Dave Brandon more and more that the military tributes became a literally every-game occurrence."
Patriotism being the last resort of scoundrels, as the saying goes. Except it's really more like the first, last, middle, before lunch, midday meeting, press conference, ambush interview, spouse-caught-you-cheating and stinkyfart excuse refuge of a scoundrel.
|2 weeks 13 min ago||Hah||
That reads like one of those auto-generated spam pages that just load up on keywords (like celebrity names) in an attempt to fool search engines.
The weirdness seems contagious, too. It's disqualified because it didn't involve Michigan, but M00N took place on the same weekend as Penn State's and Indiana's 20-punt, no-touchback game. Which among other things, as you guys pointed out in the Podcast, the winning score was a 92-yard TD run that took 20 seconds. And it wasn't even a sweep!
I'd say it's rather alarming that this is the same Indiana defense that consistently chased down our fastest players, but I'm kind of out of surprises at this point.
|2 weeks 22 hours ago||Excuse me?||
If Seth feels his words are beyond reproach he can delete my comments, ban my account and close the thread. Instead, he wrote a surprisingly lengthy reply, which conveyed a lot more sincerity to the topic than your sycophantic attempt at dismissal by fiat.
And maybe that's more than I deserve, but that's kind of why I like it here despite people like you who'd prefer more despotic methods. One way to reinforce the notion of quality -- whether it be a football program, a tradition, a person or a blog -- is to test it. One reason why I'm a regular here is because MGoBlog's writers hold up well to challenges. I'll cop to being flippant when I first wrote in but frankly Seth's lengthy and respectful reply left me wondering what to do in response, whereas your wildly emotional post was far less productive.
Now one thing I will do is delete my above post, but only because I feel it's too much of a lengthy digression. But to be perfectly clear, it was a show of rational thought that triggered the hindsight, of which you contributed none.
Edit: Aaand I can't edit it anymore. Dayum I could've sworn the window for editing posts was longer in the recent past. . .
|2 weeks 23 hours ago||Objection, your honor||
Pop culture is example of demand creation, which is well-known. I think you just undermined your own argument though -- not only in the case of film & music but of sports as well. I wasn't going to go THAT far in making a statement about mainstream entertainment; my point is just that quality isn't a democracy by presenting some of the most extremely inane examples with a dash of snark. The flip side of arguing that entertainment is either general or personal, with no objective means of evaluating either (or rather that the ONLY link is between quality and popularity), requires one to embrace the logic that one can't directly evaluate sports teams objectively either -- that the best means of evaluating teams are by finding how popular they are. And to an extent you will see a strong correlation (no one expect a local HS team to defeat the New England Patriots), but it also results in some pretty bizarre conclusions, like Michigan football is still one of the top programs in the country because it brings in the $$$ despite the M00N game.
As such Michigan fans are "uberfans" based on the above, hence your comparison to Rocky Horror, but the issue I have here is that they are by no means an exception. College football is an exception to. . . what? The NFL? That's trying to fit the "obscure" label onto Subway just because McDonald's happens to be more ubiquitous. Even in the depth of Hoke's fourth season there are still tens of thousands attending and millions watching. Your "uberfan" behavior is more relevant to the merits of full-contact nude curling.
Anyway, there is no "general" vs. "personal". The two concepts are one in the same; it's just that one is statistical whereas the other is anecdotal. EVERY decision to like something is personal, but people are also extremely predictable. We just like to tell ourselves otherwise because no one likes being a statistic. When taken in aggregate, we know there is absolutely no guarantee personal decisions will correlate with self-interest. Any sociologist or psychologist can tell you that humans are extremely prone to making very irrational decisions. (Whether that should be allowed or not is a debate I'll defer to philosophers and politicians.) That said, there's no guarantee UNpopularity correlates with quality either. My point is that they're uncorrelated; some popular things are very good; I just presented inane counter-examples to the idea that popular is inherently good.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||Uh. . .||
"In choosing all forms of entertainment, people typically gravitate to the highest quality performance."
Which is why the majority of hit movies are sequels, Michael Bay has a career, our diet is dominated by fast food and all pop hits these days involve a refrain where the same lyric is endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated. Endlessly repeated.
I see your point, but sports is really the exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule. Exception to the rule.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||Art from adversity||
I was laughing constantly and looping the revelation that PSU-Indiana had TWENTY PUNTS with nothing going beyond either 20-yard line. I hate to say it but the reality is, you guys have your best moments when you suffer.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||Gah||
They chopped up the moment and edited out the crowd so the twit could hear himself talk.
Honestly, what is it about our culture having to overcompensate for everything? Let the moment speak for itself.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||TMBG!||
I can't decide if I'm pleasantly surprised or WHY U NOT PLAY TMBG BEFORE
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Hah||
Except Clay didn't, but I see your point.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Football will be OK||
It survived DeSean Jackson and went on to give us Kaelin Clay.
Just in time for Thanksgiving, I'm thankful we have a team lacking an idiot with his head so far up his own ass he causes a 178-yard, 14-point swing by showboating.
Of all the laughably horrible things Michigan's done this year, I'm confident we won't top that.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Ahem||
I've reiterated "the record does not matter" in losses where I've said Michigan's progress is what matters.
Well, that goes for wins as well. This was the sort of game where the "winner" merely came in second-to-last place.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||Not sure why they're so||
Not sure why they're so pessimistic. They hold their players out when they get concussions and still manage to get 11 per play. They're already a step up from where we're at.
On the flip side, of all weeks to hope for basketball season, against Michigan? Does this blogger not know where Michigan's been?
|2 weeks 4 days ago||Yeah||
He totally aced it.